I'm finally learning Russian! I've been interested in learning Russian since I was about 15, but I could never figure out a way to do it. Russia is like Turkey to me in some respects.... it's a totally different culture and language that fascinates me (and both countries have amazing histories), but it's not like I will be travelling there any time soon.
The alphabet honestly isn't that hard once you remember the sounds and stuff... but it does make seeing random letters quite confusing. If you asked me what sounds в, р, or у make, I might give you a pretty interesting answer. But at the same time, I can tell you that л, з, and ф sound like "l", "z" and "f" sounds (not English letter names) respectively. Go figure.
I love learning languages, but I don't love a traditional classroom setting for learning them. While I've taken Chinese both inside and outside a classroom, I find that I learn much better with a tutor for a couple of hours than the stress of daily classes. It's a lot more fun to learn that way, and it's easier to customise what you are learning as well. Getting a tutor is definitely a luxury though, so I'm taking free, informal language classes through my university.
My boyfriend thinks I'm good at learning languages, and of course I'd like to believe him. I'm not sure if it's that my brain is wired for it, or that if I have fun whilst learning then I can acquire, retain and use a reasonable amount of a new language quite quickly. The second it's not fun, though, is the same second that I end up being absolutely miserable.
The Russian form of my name is Наташа, or Natasha! To be completely honest I think I like it better than the Spanish/Italian version, which is Natalia. I also sort of like it more than the English version of my name.... I don't think I'm going to start going by Natasha any time soon, but you never know.
Let me know what you think about the name thing?